"If I had my way, if I was lucky enough, if I could be on the brink my entire life, that great sense of expectation and excitement without the disappointment, that would be the perfect state." Cate Blanchett.
Australia born actress Cate Blanchett recently took home the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of legendary Katharine Hepburn in Martin Scorcese's life story of Howard Hughes in The Aviator (2004, starring Leonardo DiCaprio). She is also widely recognized for having played distinguished roles in the comedy Thank God He Met Lizzie (1997), Shekhar Kapur' acclaimed Elizabeth (1998, as Queen Elizabeth I), and Peter Jackson's adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of The Rings trilogy (playing elf queen Galadriel).
After celebrating her victory, Blanchett and husband Andrew Upton were reported to have visited their home in England to see their two sons. Another source mentioned that the award-winning actress was so deeply grateful to The Aviator director, Martin Scorcese, that she hoped her son would marry Scorcese's daughter in the future. She said, "...But most importantly, on behalf of everyone I know on The Aviator, thank you to Martin Scorcese. I hope my son will marry your daughter."
A humanitarian and one of People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful (1999), Blanchett has donated sums of money to the environmental organization Forest Guardians.
Childhood and Family:
Daughter of Robert Blanchett (advertising executive, former Naval officer) and June Blanchett (Melbourne businesswoman, former teacher), Catherine Elise Blanchett was born on May 14, 1969. After the death of her father (suffered a heart attack), ten-year-old Cate, together with her two siblings, younger sister Genevieve (theatre designer) and older brother Bob (computer programmer) were raised by their mother.
Born and raised in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, Cate studied Art History at the Melbourne University, Australia. After a brief visit to England and Egypt, where she worked as an extra in an Arab boxing film, Cate returned to Melbourne and studied acting at the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney, Australia (graduated in 1992). Cate also enrolled in Methodist Ladies College (MLC) in Melbourne, Australia, and became the School's Drama Captain.
In 1997 Cate met screenwriter Andrew Upton during the making of Chekov's The Seagull. The couple married in the Blue Mountains National Park of New South Wales on December 29, 1997 and had two sons, Roman Robert Upton (born on April 23, 2004 in London) and Dashiell John Upton (born on December 3, 2001, named after Andrew's favorite novelist, Dashiell Hammett). The children currently reside in the Kemp Town area of Brighton, England.
"The more you do it, the more you learn to concentrate, as a child does, incredibly intensively and then you sort of have to relax. I remember the first film I did, the lead actor would, in between scenes, be reading a newspaper or sleeping and I'd think, 'How can you do that?'" Cate Blanchett.
Once appearing as an extra in an Arab boxing film and performing in the play Sophocles' Electra at the National Institute of Dramatic Art, Cate Blanchett signed with the Sydney Theatre Company, where she first performed in Caryl Churchill's Top Girls production. In 1993 Cate won double awards, New Comer Award from the Sydney Theatre Critics Circle (as bride Felice Bauer in Timothy Daley's musical Kafka Dances) and the Rosemont Best Actress Award (for her act in David Mamet's Oleanna with Geoffrey Rush). She also made her first appearance on TV by becoming the original model for 'Tim-Tam' commercials.
Following numerous Australian plays, Cate then landed a role in ABC's Police Rescue (1994), G.P. (1994), the acclaimed drama Heartland (1994), and mini series Bordertown (1995, starring as Bianca). Meanwhile, she kept acting on stage and was nominated for Best Female Performance for portraying Ophelia in the Belvoir Street Theatre Company's production of Hamlet. Cate also is credited in other plays including the Sydney Theatre Company's Sweet Phoebe, Belvoir Street Theatre Company's The Tempest, and The Blind Giant is Dancing (playing Rose).
Cate's star began to shine in 1997. After her big screen debut in the short Parklands, Cate was cast as a nurse in Bruce Beresford's WW II drama Paradise Road (1997, starring Glenn Close and Frances McDormand). She received critical acclaim costarring in Cherie Nowlan's drama-comedy Thank God He Met Lizzie (a.k.a. The Wedding Party, with Ralph Fiennes and Frances O'Connor) and in Gillian Armstrong's adaptation of Peter Carey's romance-drama novel, Oscar and Lucinda.
Her name continued to be launched when Shekhar Kapur handed her the lead role of Queen Elizabeth I in his life story film Elizabeth (1998, co-starring Rush and Joseph Fiennes), which earned her an Oscar and Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress. Other illustrious roles followed in 1999, in Barry Levinson's Pushing Tin (with Billy Bob Thornton and Angelina Jolie), Oliver Parker's romance-comedy An Ideal Husband, and Anthony Minghella's The Talented Mr. Ripley (alongside Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Jude Law). In the same year Cate made her debut performance on the London stage performing in David Hare's Plenty.
Blanchett had hectic schedules during the 2000s. She co-starred as Russian girl Lola in the drama The Man Who Cried and starred as Southern widow Annie Wilson in Sam Raimi's thriller The Gift. She also shared the screen with Thornton and Bruce Willis in Bandits (2001) and was widely known for portraying elf queen Galadriel in the Peter Jackson's adaptation of J.J.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings (2001), which she reprised in its sequels, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003).
"I had never done anything with blue screen before, or prosthetics, or anything like that. Lord of the Rings was like stepping into a videogame for me. It was another world completely. But, to be honest, I basically did it so that I could have the ears. I thought they would really work with my bare head." Cate Blanchett.
Cate's acting resume kept growing by playing important roles in The Shipping News (2001), Charlotte Gray (2001), Heaven (2002) and she received praise for her character in Chasing the Dragon: The Veronica Guerin Story (2002). She also could be seen working with Brad Pitt in Darren Aronofsky's The Last Man (2002) and teamed with Tommy Lee Jones in Ron Howard's thriller The Missing (2003). Cate also costarred with Bill Murray in Wes Anderson's adventure comedy The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004).
Most recently, in February 2005, Blanchett gained superstardom status by earning the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of the renowned Katharine Hepburn in Martin Scorsese's classic drama The Aviator (starring Leonardo DiCaprio). In the next years, audiences will watch Cate as she stars in the upcoming films, Rowan Woods' thriller Little Fish (2005) and Golden Age (2006).
"If you know you are going to fail, then fail gloriously!" Cate Blanchett.
- Academy Award: Best Supporting Actress, The Aviator, 2005
- Screen Actors Guild: Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role, The Aviator, 2005
- BAFTA: Best Supporting Actress, The Aviator, 2005
- Broadcast Film Critics Association: Best Actress, Elizabeth, 1998
- Golden Satellite: Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama), Elizabeth, 1998
- Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association: Best Actress, Elizabeth, 1998
- Golden Globe: Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama), Elizabeth, 1998
- Chicago Film Critics: Best Actress, Elizabeth, 1998
- Australian Film Institute: Best Supporting Actress, Thank God He Met Lizzie, 1997
- Film Critics Circle of Australia: Best Supporting Actress, Thank God He Met Lizzie, 1997
- Sydney Theatre Critics Circle Rosemount: Best Actress, Oleanna, 1993
- Sydney Theatre Critics Circle: Best Newcomer, Kafka Dances, 1992